It's now under a week until Christmas Day... and we know you've still got the last remaining bits to tick off your Christmas shopping list. We certainly do!
Fear not, there's still time – and we even have some great last-minute ideas to help combat the postal delays. (Gift cards are your friend.)
If you're still looking for the perfect present for the audio/film/music/gamer/tech lover in your life, you've come to the right place. Below you will find expertly curated gift ideas for tech, music and movie lovers in our 2022 Christmas gift guide.
We are keeping all gifts to under £250 this year (see, we can be sensible sometimes), but that doesn't mean you can't pick up a fabulous present, with Award-winning speakers, turntables and even a full-size LEGO set finding their way in within budget.
From budget stocking fillers to big-ticket hi-fi and AV gifts picked by members of Team What Hi-Fi?, this Christmas gift feast promises something for everyone, and at every (real-world) budget. So, credit card at the ready, let's get stuck in...
Gift ideas under £50
Looking for great gifts without emptying out your savings account? These tidbits are all under £50, but you would never know it. From earbuds and 4K TV sticks to a great music biography to an even greater magazine (ahem), here are excellent gifts your loved one will be very happy to find under the tree (or in their stocking).
Sony WF-C500 true wireless earbuds
These Award-winning budget Bluetooth earbuds’ 10-hour battery life, compact sporty design and enjoyable, well-balanced sound make for a great stocking filler. Along with black and white, the Sony WF-C500 come in minty green or pastel orange colourful finishes, too.
Chromecast with Google TV 4K
Google's Chromecast is a user-friendly, feature-packed media streamer with all the apps you already know and love. Whatever you want to watch, you can with Chromecast. Plus, you'll get a great 4K HDR picture, and Dolby Vision and Atmos support.
If you've got a great pair of over-ear headphones, you will want to give it its own place to shine (not to mention keep it in good shape).
Simple, stylish and super-tidy, these headphone stands, available in a lovely real wood finish, are a great gift for the audiophile, music-maker or gamer in your life.
£25 at Amazon (various wood finishes)
The Storyteller: Tales of Life and Music - Dave Grohl
While it lacks the warts 'n' all Nirvana-related content some might be hoping for, Dave Grohl's autobiography is just as charming as the man himself. From quitting school to join a band, to sudden super-stardom with Nirvana and then Foo Fighters, The Storyteller is packed with eye-opening tales.
Buy The Storyteller: Tales of Life and Music - Dave Grohl at Amazon
Tile Starter Pack
Sometimes the best gift is that very useful gadget you keep forgetting to buy even if you really need it. Bluetooth trackers are an ideal stocking filler if you know someone who constantly misplaces their keys or is paranoid about losing their backpack. And Tile not only makes some of the best trackers around (they're smart and versatile), but they're also arguably the most stylish and far more affordable than others (cough-AirTags-cough).
The Tile Starter Pack combines a Tile Slim and a Tile Mate for just £34 and you can get some fantastic Limited Edition designs (such as the lovely Indigo Palace version pictured above) directly from Tile's website, or stick with the basic black or white ones from Amazon.
A subscription to What Hi-Fi? magazine
The hi-fi and home entertainment lover in your life will thank you for ever more with a subscription to the (world's best) magazine that brings you the most trusted tech reviews on the planet.
In an overt act of shameless self-promotion, we can’t help but suggest our own physical form as a present. Our annual subscription gets you 13 issues (one per month, plus our special Awards issue) featuring reviews, buying guides (and some darn good features, if we say so ourselves) for less than £3.50 a copy.
You can subscribe or buy the latest issue here, or buy the digital edition on iPhone, iPad, Android devices or Kindle edition
Gift ideas under £100
You really need to like someone to spend close to £100 on them. You can't cop out with easy options like a box of chocolates (even the really fancy ones) or a bottle of the finest wines here – this is an amount right in the sweet spot for "proper" Christmas presents, especially if they love their music, movies and tech.
Apple HomePod Mini smart speaker
Apple’s Siri-powered smart speaker is tiny and mighty, with a sophisticated, engaging sound, substantial smart skills and impressive music discovery. Perfect for iOS die-hards with an Apple Music subscription, the HomePod Mini is available in many colourful finishes.
AudioQuest DragonFly Black USB DAC
Better sound doesn't come smaller or cheaper than this USB DAC and headphone amplifier, which can be plugged easily into your laptop. Use the DragonFly Black instead of the headphone output on your computer for an immediate musical boost; and it supports hi-res tracks up to 24-bit/192kHz, too. We love the way the logo lights up with different colours to show the sample rate, too.
Amazon Fire 7
Know someone that wants to take their movies and music on the go but can't splash out nearly £400 on an iPad? No problem, just take a look at the Award-winning Amazon Fire 7 which comes in well under £100.
It's a lot of tablet for the money, with a 7-inch 1024p display and up to 10 hours of battery life, the Fire HD 7 makes for a perfect portable companion to take media on the go - especially if you're travelling this festive season.
Lenco L-85 turntable
This plug-and-play deck is perfect for vinyl beginners. Easy to use, you can rip vinyl to MP3s using USB, and it has a built-in phono stage. It's a surprisingly balanced and likeable sound, too, especially with vocals. This Lenco L-85 is likely the cheapest turntable that's actually good you will see (and hear) all year.
Chord Company Clearway Analogue RCA (2022) cable
Nothing says 'all the gear, no idea' like poor cabling. A good pair of interconnects will open up new sonic realms your previously believed were off limits to your system; poor ones will leave your new Technics deck sounding like a Crosley Cruiser. At less than £80 a pair, the Award-winning Chord Clearway Analogue RCA (2022) could be the most frugal yet game-changing upgrade you ever make.
Gift ideas under £200
We have already listed our favourite gift ideas under £50 and under £100, but you if you are prepared to splash out a little more, you will find an even greater choice of quality hi-fi and AV kit to gift to your (favourite) friends and family this year.
We can already imagine the tears of joy and astonishment when they rip open the wrapping paper and find one of these brilliant gifts unveiled...
JBL Flip 6 Bluetooth speaker
With its waterproof design, sweet sonics and 12-hour battery life, the JBL Flip 6 is the perfect Bluetooth speaker to take on a winter camping getaway. Available in many colours and a rugged finish that can take all kinds of dirt, knocks and adventure.
1989 Batwing LEGO set
Everyone knows Michael Keaton was the best Batman. This LEGO set recreates the Batwing from the iconic 1989 movie, complete with removable canopy and wall bracket for displaying it. Holy perfect Christmas gift, Batman!
Apple TV 4K
Know someone who's recently bought a 4K TV? Well, this Christmas could be the time to give them some 4K content to play on it. The Apple TV 4K streamer boasts impressive picture and sound quality and has an attractive user interface.
But the main attraction of Apple's box of streaming tricks is its huge library of movies – many of which are available in 4K HDR, and some of which are Christmas classics.
Sony WF-1000XM4 wireless earbuds
We're not sure there is much more to say about these Award-winning wireless earbuds, apart from the fact that they will make a great Christmas present for someone. Don't forget, they launched at £250 so to be able to pick the Sony XM4 up for well under £200 is great news.
Expect an entertaining, musical sound, excellent noise cancelling and a huge thank you from whoever you decide is lucky enough to receive them.
Gift ideas for music fans
Love music? Our round-up of the best music gifts is perfect for those who want to show off their deep love of music, and want to hear every morsel of detail and emotion from their collection. Gift ideas include Award-winning speakers and hi-fi headphones, as well as special editions and music-related books thrown into the mix.
We have kept these ideas (relatively) affordable, and even the budding audiophile in your life will be happy with these treats under the Christmas tree.
How Music Works - David Byrne
An oldie but a goodie, Talking Heads frontman David Byrne's celebration of the very thing he spent decades thinking about and working on – music making! – is a must-read for any melomaniac. He draws on his own work and that of his many illustrious collaborators, as well as globetrotting adventures, to show how music emerges from cultural circumstance.
Buy How Music Works - David Byrne at Amazon
Dali Spektor 2 stereo speakers
If someone you know could do with a top-class pair of budget standmounters to bring them some Christmas cheer, these Dali Spektor 2s could be just the thing (and they are under £200 too!).
There is a pleasing level of detail and a great sense of organisation. The Dali Spektor 2s deliver music with considerable finesse, precision and energy, which means they are guaranteed to get the Christmas party started.
Electric Love Blueprint – A History of Electronic Music poster
Electronic music-lover in your midst? Blow their neon socks off this Christmas with this history of the beeps and boops, that has been beautifully mapped to the circuit board of a theremin.
Buy Electric Love Blueprint – A History of Electronic Music at Dorothy
Other genres (hip-hop, rock, jazz, acid house) are also available
Grado SR80x wired headphones
These dynamically fluid and open-backed headphones are best suited for at-home listening. At this money, the Award-winning SR80x remains the finest model in their class and pair up beautifully with your hi-fi kit.
The Beatles – Let It Be: Special Edition
Do you have a Beatles fan in your life? Don't let them be this year, get them the Let It Be: Special Edition, freshly mixed by producer Giles Martin and engineer Sam Okell in stereo. Hear those classics you have been listening to forever with greater clarity and detail than ever before.
This Super Deluxe collection with four LPs and a 12" EP has previously unreleased session recordings, a 100-page hard-back book with an introduction by Paul McCartney, with extensive notes and track-by-track recording information and much more.
Buy The Beatles – Let It Be Special Edition at HMV
Gift ideas for vinyl lovers
Whether your loved one is a vinyl purist or dipping their toes into the vinyl world, these gifts are for those who love the sight, sound and feel of a record player needle on a vinyl LP.
If you are on the hunt for a present for the vinyl lover in your life, these gift ideas – from vinyl subscriptions to phono stages to display solutions and more – should make the giftee feel very, very special.
Vinyl Moon subscription
There are plenty of vinyl subscriptions around, but this one is ideal for vinyl fans who love a surprise (and extra goodies). Every month, they will receive a vinyl “mixtape” of 10 songs from new artists from around the world, and each release comes with a special colourful pressing, original artwork and more deluxe goodies. Delightful.
Buy a Vinyl Moon gift subscription
Sony PS-LX310BT Bluetooth turntable
The Sony PS-LX310BT is an excellent starter option for a vinyl newbie, but it's much more than that. This fully automatic deck is one of the best around at this price.
Other players might offer a superior sound, but this Sony makes up for it with a built-in phono stage and Bluetooth. It's also ridiculously user-friendly, resoundingly listenable and fun – which counts for a lot at Christmas, right?
Hi-Fi, The History of High-End Audio Design
A lovely coffee-table book for the true hi-fi geek and audiophile, highlighting glorious audio kit – turntables, horn speakers – from the 1950s to the present day. Spot your favourites and see how designs have evolved throughout the years.
Buy Hi-Fi, The History of High-End Audio Design at Phaidon
Vinyl wall mounts and display
If you are getting into – or indeed getting back into – vinyl, it's likely you are spending a pretty penny to do it. So you may as well show it all off with some vinyl album wall mounts, or even just a single 'Now Playing' stand to display what's currently spinning.
Buy "Now Playing" vinyl stand at Ripcaster
Buy a transparent vinyl wall mount at Amazon
Buy a different "Now Playing" vinyl holder at Amazon
Cambridge Audio Duo MC/MM phono stage
If neither your amplifier nor your turntable has a phono stage, then you need to add an external one. For less than £200, the Cambridge Audio Duo MM/MC is a great pick. It doesn't look much but it's sleek by phono stage standards and it helps deliver great sound to turntables with moving coil or moving magnet cartridges.
Cat scratch DJ turntable
Love vinyl? Love cats? Then you will love this silly gift. This scratch turntable serves two purposes. First, it keeps your cat from destroying your curtains – it will be too busy scratching seven shades out of the spinning 'platter' – and second, it will provide hours of entertainment as you watch your cat pretend to be a DJ.
But Cat Scratch DJ Deck at Amazon
Gift ideas for film fans
From spectacular blockbusters to prestigious indie films, it has been a good couple of years for film fanatics, even with the dreaded C-word hampering the cinematic fun somewhat. So the movie buff in your life will no doubt be grateful for these thoughtful and beautiful cinema-related gifts to keep them occupied on Christmas Day.
MUBI film subscription
It might be more traditional to get the cinephile in your life a cinema voucher or a gift card to spend on Blu-rays, but how about a pressie that offers both at-home and theatrical film experiences? You can gift 3 or 12 months of the MUBI streaming service for £40 or £100 respectively – and that includes a free cinema ticket every week too.
Buy a MUBI film gift subscription
Film art books
These beautiful movie art books are a gateway into the creative process behind some of our favourite films - whether it's the latest Marvel, Star Wars or Batman flicks. Our favourites are The Art and Soul of Blade Runner 2049 and Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse – The Art of the Movie.
Buy The Art and Soul of Blade Runner 2049 at Amazon
Buy Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse – The Art of the Movie at Amazon
Top Gun & Top Gun: Maverick Blu-ray collection
What better way to celebrate Christmas than with back-to-back Top Gun movies? Props to Tom Cruise for crafting an exceptional sequel with real and breathtaking jet fighter action that will keep the whole family glued to their seats.
Buy Top Gun & Top Gun: Maverick Blu-ray collection at Amazon
Amazon Fire TV Stick 4K
The first Fire TV Stick capable of showing a 4K picture is a must if you have a 4K TV. The Alexa Voice Remote has all the usual skills, plus the device is not short of AV compatibility, with support for Dolby Vision, HDR, HDR10+ and Dolby Atmos. How good is it? We gave it an Award in 2019, calling it the benchmark for streaming sticks.
Cinephile: A Card Game
It wouldn't be Christmas without turkey, trivia... and tears as people argue about trivia. This movie card game is the ideal after-dinner entertainment and will suss out those who care way too much about the minutiae of movies and those who haven't seen that famous film everyone else in the world has. Outrageous.
There are plenty of game variations you can play, and the artwork alone deserves applause.
Top 100 Movies Scratch Off poster
Easily one of the coolest ways to keep track of your watchlist - this poster features 100 of the best movies from recent history. Whether it's The Godfather, 2001: A Space Odyssey, Guardians of the Galaxy or Finding Nemo, this poster has entries that span across decades and genres.
Once you've watched the movie, you can scratch off the corresponding entry to reveal a unique piece of art. This is a must-have for film enthusiasts.
Buy Top 100 Movies Scratch Off poster at Amazon
Mobile Pixels Duex Max
Now you can use two monitors without crowding your kitchen table WFH setup (or sneakily watch the unmissable sports event or a fluffy Christmas film while checking your emails). This 1080p portable monitor sticks to the back of your laptop using magnets, then slides out to act as a second screen. Super neat!
Buy Mobile Pixels Duex Max at MobilePixels
Gift ideas for gamers
Gamers are a hard bunch to please. Perhaps hardened by the unforgiving nature of the online battlefield or maybe spoiled by the sheer quality of modern-day consoles and games – either way, a gift for a gamer needs to be carefully chosen.
But help is at hand. We have searched high and low for presents to put a smile on the face of the most hardcore player, particularly if they have a penchant for superior picture and/or sound...
God of War: Ragnarök (PS5)
Just got a next-generation PlayStation? Or perhaps there’s one waiting under the tree already? Either way, the sequel to 2018’s God Of War looks like the perfect action-packed visual treat to test drive your PS5.
Marseille mClassic 4K upscaler for Nintendo Switch
Wishing for a Switch Pro? Not to worry, because Marseille has you covered with the mClassic, a 4K upscaler for Nintendo Switch that is sure to improve contrast, up vibrance, and clean up all those jagged pixel edges totally lag-free.
Astro A10 gaming headset
What better way to spend your holiday downtime than with a spot of online gaming? We all know someone in our party chat with a busted microphone, or one earcup that only works if you pinch the cable in a certain way - so we'd recommend treating them to a new pair of Astro A10s.
Using a standard 3.5mm audio connector, this headset works on Xbox (One and Series X|S), PlayStation (PS4 and PS5), Nintendo Switch and PC, making it a great choice for those who game across multiple platforms.
GAME gift card
Not sure what games system the person you are buying for owns? Or perhaps they are still undecided between a PS5 and Xbox Series X? The simplest option is to go for a Game gift card. That way, the joystick-happy recipient can spend it in store on any console, game or accessory – new or second-hand. Cards come in £5 to £50 amounts and can be purchased online.
Betron Screen Cleaner Kit
Is there anything worse than fingerprints and dust all over your precious tech? If you know someone with a constantly smudged screen then grab this handy cleaning kit – it's a perfect and practical stocking filler.
Buy Betron Screen Cleaner Kit at Amazon
PlayStation Plus/Xbox Game Pass subscription
If someone you know has a PS5 or Xbox Series S console on their Christmas list, then chances are they will also need a subscription to the relevant online platform so they can take part in multiplayer action with friends and other gamers. Both Microsoft and Sony offer different online subscriptions which can vary in terms of both length and the features on offer, so it will pay to do a little research before taking the plunge.
Buy PlayStation Plus subscription at CD Keys
Buy Xbox Games Pass subscription at CD Keys
Gift cards for music, tech and film fans
You've done it again, haven't you: you have left it to the very last minute, and you have no idea what to give to your partner's brother's new girlfriend who is visiting for the first time.
What's the solution? Why, a gift card of course. That way, they can snag the gift they want in their own time (and it saves you from painstakingly combing the gift aisles or scrolling on Etsy). Plus, most can be emailed directly to the recipient's inbox. You can even do this on Christmas morning before everyone wakes up. Easy.
Ready to speed up your shopping? From Amazon to Spotify and Netflix to Nintendo, these are the best gift cards and subscriptions for music, tech and movie lovers.
How about giving the gift of music itself? While Tidal is our favourite music streaming service for its CD-quality streaming and hi-res Masters, it is easier to gift someone unlimited music access on the most popular streaming service on the planet.
A Spotify Premium subscription costs a tenner a month, so we don't need to tell you how much one for one-, or three- or six-month period would set you back.
Nothing banishes boredom like a Netflix gift card. From The Crown to Wednesday to Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery, the primo streaming service is packed with exclusive movies and TV shows. Amazon offers both physical and electronic Netflix gift cards in amounts from £25 to £200. They can be used to cover monthly subscription fees and don't expire, so there is no rush to use them.
Sony PlayStation Store
If you are shopping for a PlayStation fan who knows their Red Dead Redemption from their Cyberpunk 2077, a PlayStation Store gift card makes perfect sense. You can buy them from the likes of Amazon, Argos and Currys in amounts from £15 to £100. The credit can be splurged in the online PlayStation Store, which caters to PlayStation 3, 4, 5, Vita and PSP. You can even spend the cards on PlayStation Plus subscriptions.
Buy Sony PlayStation Store gift cards
A whole year of Disney Plus for the price of just 10 months - sounds good to us! If you know a big-time binge streamer that's exhausted the Netflix catalogue, or perhaps a Marvel or Star Wars fan that's overdue a movie marathon, then this Disney Plus gift subscription is the perfect option.
It's worth noting that this does come in the form of an email code and not a physical gift card, but we recommend printing the code out and making a DIY gift card if you're feeling creative.
Buy a Disney Plus gift subscription
Question: what do you get the person who has everything? Answer: a John Lewis gift card. The respected department store sells everything from award-winning OLED TVs to Egyptian cotton sheets, so the lucky recipient won't have any trouble finding something to pique their interest. You can buy John Lewis gift cards online or in-store and they are valid at Waitrose, too.
Currys & PC World
Currys is a tech lover's paradise. You pop in for a kettle and come out laden with with an OLED TV, a couple of smart speakers and a next-gen games console. In short, a Currys gift card will relieve you of the burden of choosing the perfect gift. Cards are available from £10 to £1000 and there is a choice of festive designs.
Buy Currys & PC World gift cards
Nintendo eShop Cards will go down a treat with nostalgic parents and young gamers. They can be used to purchase games and other content from the Nintendo eShop on Switch, Wii U and Nintendo 3DS consoles, as well as the Nintendo website. And with £15 to £100 cards available, there is likely to be a card to suit your budget.
And last but not least – if you are really out of ideas (and have left it super last-minute), you can't go wrong with an Amazon gift card. The retail giant sells everything from iPads to Award-winning wireless earbuds (and more) at keen prices and offers gift cards from 10p to £1000. You can even print them off at home and personalise them by uploading your own photo.
What better gift than letting the recipient choose their own perfect gift?
From all of us at What Hi-Fi?, happy shopping and Merry Christmas!